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Posts Tagged ‘Indian Policy Framework’

Who will guard the guards?

November 18, 2011 2 comments

India must work on more freedom, less governance model of polity – unlike Desert Bloc systems that need more laws, more powers that limit freedom.

Anna Hazare has an empty agenda. Zero ideology. (Cartoon by Ajit Ninan; source and courtesy - timescontent.com). Click for source image.

Anna Hazare has an empty agenda. Zero ideology. (Cartoon by Ajit Ninan; source and courtesy - timescontent.com). Click for source image.

Santosh Hegde ran protection money cartel as Karnataka Lokayukta, claims IPS officer

A senior police officer who was part of the Karnataka Lokayukta during Justice N. Santosh Hegde’s tenure has alleged that the watchdog was steeped in corruption.

In an interview to a Kannada daily, IPS officer Madhukar Shetty said: “The officers have formed a cartel to extract protection money from a particular department in return for a free run.” Shetty, who was the SP in the Lokayukta’s police wing during Hegde’s tenure, is now in the US on study leave for two years. (via http://indiatoday.intoday.in | Santosh Hegde ran protection money cartel as Karnataka Lokayukta, claims IPS officer).

Seduced by the glamour of 'progress', media attention, moral 'superiority', the anti-corruption crusade is an empty jihad. (Cartoon by Ajit Ninan; Posted On Friday, April 29, 2011; source and courtesy - mumbaimirror.com). Click for source image.

Seduced by the glamour of 'progress', media attention, moral 'superiority', the anti-corruption crusade is an empty jihad. (Cartoon by Ajit Ninan; Posted On Friday, April 29, 2011; source and courtesy - mumbaimirror.com). Click for source image.

Even if this is untrue

Even if these accusations are not true, this brings an important question to fore: Is more governance an answer to a corrupt system?  So you put a Lokayukta on top of all the politicians – how do you ensure that he/she is not corrupt? In fact – as the IPS officer alleges, the Lokayutka was running his own “protection money racket.”

Pay me or else I will report you!

What India needs

Both Anuraag’s model of भारत-तंत्र Bharat-tantra or the Indic Triad of Freedom, presented in Operation Red Lotus, view Indic polity that makes freedom not governance as the basis for a political system.  The question of who will guard the guards was answered by devolution of power, not concentration of power.

As long as India continues to embrace Desert Bloc models of top-down hierarchical systems of polity, questions such as “who will guard the guards” remain relevant.

Empty ideas

The proposed लोकपाल or a national Ombudsman will aggregate this power even further!

Will Anna Hazare look within India for answers or continue to be seduced by western models with Indian names?

Will Anna Hazare listen?


1971 Bangla Desh War – Why was China quiet?

June 17, 2011 13 comments

Why was China militarily neutral in Indo-Pak Wars-1965, 1971? Tibet Card used by Indian Foreign Policy?

Signing of Surrender Document on 16 December 1971 Surrender received by Lieutenant General Jagjit Singh Arora (General Officer Commanding (GOC), Eastern Command) from Pakistani General A.A.K. Niazi. (Photo courtesy - indopakmilitaryhistory.blogspot.com). Click for larger image.

Signing of Surrender Document on 16 December 1971 Surrender received by Lieutenant General Jagjit Singh Arora (General Officer Commanding (GOC), Eastern Command) from Pakistani General A.A.K. Niazi. (Photo courtesy - indopakmilitaryhistory.blogspot.com). Click for larger image.

War on two fronts

One of the major reasons why India could take on Pakistan on two fronts – in Bangla Desh and on the Western Front, was because, there was no Chinese action to support Pakistan. China has been positioned as an all-weather friend of Pakistan? So, in the hour of need, China did not lift its little finger to help Pakistan against India?

The Bangla Desh Theatre of war (Graphic courtesy - timesofindia.com). Click for larger image.

The Bangla Desh Theatre of war (Graphic courtesy - timesofindia.com). Click for larger image.

China’s inaction

The 1971 Bangladesh War changed world perception of India – leading to Nixon’s famous outbursts. As the tapes show, the US President pushed, prodded and cajoled the Chinese to act against India – to no avail.

China’s puzzling inaction, similar to its inaction in 1965 also, declassified White House Tapes show, in the 1971 Bangladesh War, is rarely analysed in the current India-China narratives.

Indo-Soviet alliance

The answer for 1971 seems to be the dreaded Soviets.

The Chinese dreaded the Soviets. China’s aggressive posturing against Soviet Russia on the border island of Zhenbao-Damanskii had alienated the Russians. Soviet Russia backed off after China was made to pay a price. It was some US show of support to China, that made the Soviets stop from complete bull-dozing of China. This aspect of international politics is rarely analyzed or factored into analysis. But this does not explain 1965-Chinese neutral posturing.

This extract below from The Guardian gives a perspective on the USSR-China-USA relationship.

The Tribune announcing Niazi's appeal for surrender. Niazi's surrender with 1,00,000 soldiers, was the largest surrender received by any general in 20th century. (Picture courtesy - bangladesh-tour.blogspot.com). Click for larger image.

The Tribune announcing Niazi's appeal for surrender. Niazi's surrender with 1,00,000 soldiers, was the largest surrender received by any general in 20th century. (Picture courtesy - bangladesh-tour.blogspot.com). Click for larger image.

de facto alliance was personally decided by Nixon in August 1969 just as the Soviet Union was preparing to launch a pre-emptive nuclear attack on China. Nixon had decided the Soviets were the more dangerous party and that it was against American interests for China to be “smashed” in a Chinese-Soviet war. “It was a revolutionary moment in US foreign policy,” Kissinger explains. “An American president declared we had a strategic interest in the survival of a major communist country.”

In October 1969, Mao Zedong was so convinced war was nigh, he ordered all Chinese leaders to disperse around the country, except for the indispensable Zhou Enlai. Kissinger says that it was only Moscow’s uncertainty about America’s response that led the Soviets to postpone the project. Soon after, Kissinger, as Nixon’s national security adviser, engaged in the secret negotiations that led to the American president’s meeting with Mao in 1972, an event that astonished America’s enemies and its friends. (via On China by Henry Kissinger – review | Books | The Guardian).


Tendu leaves – How Maoist-Govt Cabal loot Adivasis

June 13, 2011 3 comments
The Maoists-Naxals are fighting the Government for rights to extract from the adivasi. The adivasis have a choice. Pay protection money to the Government or to Maoists-Naxals. (Cartoon by Morparia; courtesy - development-dialogues.blogspot.com). Click for larger image.

The Maoists-Naxals are fighting the Government for rights to 'exploit' the adivasi. The adivasis have a choice. Pay protection money to the Government or to Maoists-Naxals. Right now they are paying both - the State and the Maoist Naxal. (Cartoon by Morparia; courtesy - development-dialogues.blogspot.com). Click for larger image.

Dried tendu leaf used fo rolling bidis.

Dried tendu leaf used fo rolling bidis.

Governments and tobacco

Globally four major companies and government monopolies control a US$400 billion trade in cigarettes. These cigarette monopolies, directly or indirectly controlled by governments, take away US$1 from every  US$175 that people earn. China and USA are leaders in this extortion game.

Tobacco – India Govt.’s ‘innovation’

The Indian State also, on a much smaller scale,  replicates this same mechanism. Since Indians consume tobacco in a traditional, non-industrial manner, the Indian State changes the method of extortion. Apart from tobacco, the main ingredient of bidis, is tendu leaf. Tendu leaf is used to roll the tobacco in. While tobacco farmers are exempt from income tax, adivasis have to sell all their produce to the State. For which the State pays them wages. A newspaper reports

TENDU LEAVES, A major forest produce used for making bidis, is the main source of income for the tribal people in Chhattisgarh.  (Photo source and courtesy - hinduonnet.com).

TENDU LEAVES, A major forest produce used for making bidis, is the main source of income for the tribal people in Chhattisgarh. (Photo source and courtesy - hinduonnet.com).

Over the last two decades, the graph of tendu patta wages has shot up. This year, the Chhattisgarh government raised the wage rate from 70 paise to 80 paise per bundle of 50 leaves. But collectors like Bargu earned higher wages (Rs 1.05 paise) courtesy the Maoists. As the parallel authority in large parts of Bastar, they fix wages and even a system of wage payment.

For instance, officially, the state government’s minor forest produce federation auctions each lot of tendu leaves. Traders or contractors pay a sale price to the federation. A portion is sent to the federation’s field managers, who are supposed to disburse it as wages to the adivasis. But, in reality, the managers simply hand the money back to the contractor, who adds an extra wage amount fixed by the Maoists and sends his own staff to pay off the collectors.

“In our areas, we bargain with the contractor every year, and get a higher price for the adivasis,” says Gudsa Usendi, Maoist spokesperson. ”Last year, it was Re 1. This year it’s between Re 1.05 to Re 1.20. This way, we have stopped the exploitation of adivasis.”

That’s not an empty boast — but it’s only partially true. The Maoists have wrangled higher wages for the adivasis and expanded their support base, but they have also obtained higher levies for themselves. Most traders refused to divulge exact amounts, some reluctantly offered a rough range: 5-10% of the sale price. For one Rs 1 crore, that works out to Rs 5-10 lakh.

“The market of tendu leaves is not less than Rs 2,000 crore,” says K Sadavijaya Kumar, of the Association of Beedi leaf traders. Given that at least a quarter of the tendu growing areas appears to be under Maoist control, the amount of levies could run into crores.

By maintaining a monopoly over the ownership and sale of leaves, the state earns revenue. In 2009, Chhattisgarh Minor Forest Produce Federation made Rs 256 crore from tendu leaves. Rs 189 crore was paid to the collectors, and Rs 66 crore retained by the federation. (via Tendu leaves little hope for tribals – The Times of India).

Tendu leaves

Tendu leaves

And the Maoist- Naxalites are fighting with the State for ‘exploitation-of-adivasis‘ rights. From being owners of India’s forests, under भारत-तंत्र Bharat-tantra, the adivasis have become wage earners. By this one single action, the State has impoverished crores of adivasis. Such are the reasons for Indian poverty – The Indian State.

And the Maoist- Naxalites are fighting with the State for ‘exploitation-of-adivasis‘ rights.

Be afraid … Very afraid, Manubhai

Akali leader, Master Tara Singh threatened to go a hunger strike for a Punjab based on linguistic lines, had Nehru worried. RK Laxman's cartoon on Akali leader, published on June 23, 1961. (Image courtesy - timesofindia.com.). Click for larger image.

Akali leader, Master Tara Singh threatened to go a hunger strike for a Punjab based on linguistic lines, had Nehru worried. RK Laxman's cartoon on Akali leader, published on June 23, 1961. (Image courtesy - timesofindia.com.). Click for larger image.

Examining the history of political causes in the Indian context, should be a cause of concern to the Indian Government. The cynicism and casual attitude of Indian authorities is misplaced.

Western debates

For much time after Independence, the Indian Government spent time dilly-dallying on identifying boundaries of administrative States. Some suggested, that like Europe had drawn some arbitrary lines across Africa, India also should do the same. Or like the straight-line boundaries of States that make up the USA.

Cartoon by Ajit Ninan; Courtesy timesofindia.com. Click for larger image.

Anna Hazare and Baba Ramdev's hunger strikes have touched a raw nerve across India. Cartoon by Ajit Ninan; Courtesy timesofindia.com. Click for larger image.

Western predictions about the collapse of the Indian nation were never absent from the public sphere. Without a past to go by, Nehru dithered.

You can’t hide

The man in the vanguard of the linguistic reorganization of states movement was Potti Sreeramulu – from Chennai. While Potti Sreeramulu was a Telugu, he was from Chennai – which at that time had a bigger Telugu population than today.

At stake was the issue of Chennai– then Madras. Would Chennai go to Tamil Nadu, when it was formed, or go to Andhra Pradesh, whose formation was already announced.

Rajagopalchari, another acolyte of Western ‘capitalism’, ignored Potti Sreeramulu. Finally after years of dithering, by Nehru’s administration, Potti Sriramulu went on a hunger strike.

Nehru and Rajagopalchari took no notice. Potti Sriramulu died. The formation of Andhra Pradesh followed.

Hunger strikes make rulers look bad

Gandhiji’s hunger-strikes were famous the world over – and the British made a pretense of succumbing to this moral force, at least in the case of Gandhiji.

Be afraid. Very afraid. What happens if Baba Ramdev ... (Cartoon by Ajit Ninan; courtesy - timesofindia.com). Click for larger image.

Be afraid. Very afraid. What happens if Baba Ramdev ... (Cartoon by Ajit Ninan; courtesy - timesofindia.com). Click for larger image.

Remember, the British had been casual about the demands and the subsequent death of a political prisoner, Jatin Das during hunger strike at Lahore Jail. Even before, in Northern Ireland, the death of Terence MacSwiney, the Lord Mayor of Cork, who died on 74-day hunger strike in 1920, while a prisoner of the British government, did not shake the British much.

Nehru’s indifference to Potti Sriramulu hunger-strike was a great propaganda point for the West. Nehru’s reputation was sullied.

Agony prolonged

After the death of Potti Sriramulu and the formation of Andhra Pradesh, demands for other States followed.

Samyukta Maharashtra was again very noisy and divisive. Similarly, Nehru dragged his feet on Punjab too. Master Tara Singh of the Akali Dal went on a hunger strike. A worried Nehru, ‘keeping in anxious touch with developments while making a tour of Uttar Pradesh’, had Tara Singh arrested. More than 30,000 Sikhs joined Master Tara Singh in jails across North India. Punjab, Haryana and Himachal followed.

Manubhai - Anna-Baba may not be very sophisticated politically or ideologically. But they are touching a protest nerve. That is the दुखती रग ' dukhti rag.' (Cartoon by Ajit Ninan; courtesy - timesofindia.com). Click for larger image.

Manubhai - Anna-Baba may not be very sophisticated politically or ideologically. But they are touching a protest nerve. That is the दुखती रग 'dukhti rag.' (Cartoon by Ajit Ninan; courtesy - timesofindia.com). Click for larger image.

India different

60 years on, many of these States are larger than 90% of the countries in the world.  There is need to break them up into smaller units. There are growing demands to do the same. Telangana is one such case – which has hung fire for more than 40 years.

Meanwhile the anti-corruption protests are reminiscent of the Jaya Prakash Narayan’s movement in the 1970s, which finally paralysed the Indian State – and provoked Indira Gandhi to impose emergency.

Indians joining in these protests, are protesting about many issues – and using Anna Hazare’s and Baba Ramdev’s Anna-Baba protest vehicle to ride. Anna-Baba have succeeded in identifying the दुखती रग ‘dukhti rag’ – the jangling nerve, of the people.

Anna-Baba’s agendas are thin – very thin. But the people are thick as flies. Just like Jaya Prakash Narayan’s movement.

Manubhai, those who don’t learn from history …

Abbottabad does not quite add up

May 11, 2011 2 comments
The difference between 'civilized' West and 'barbaric' Islamic world. (Cartoon by John Cole; courtesy - caglecartoons.com). Click for original image.

The difference between 'civilized' West and 'barbaric' Islamic world. (Cartoon by John Cole; courtesy - caglecartoons.com). Click for original image.

Things go bump in the night

In the early hours of 2nd May, 2011, an obscure twitter-user started tweeting  about the US raid on Osama Bin Laden’s safe-house – 35 km from Islamabad, 200 miles south of the Afghanistan border, in Abbottabad. In a city, which houses Pakistan’s equivalent of Indian Military Academy.

But Pakistan’s police, para-military, military forces claimed ignorance, showed surprise, feigned outrage. Par for the course. Was it abject failure or a cover-up in Pakistan , by the powers-that-be?

US triumphalism is misplaced. But then Osama's death will surely get Obama many votes. (Cartoon courtesy - http://jeffreyhill.typepad.com). Click for larger image.

US triumphalism is misplaced. But then Osama's death will surely get Obama many votes. (Cartoon courtesy - http://jeffreyhill.typepad.com). Click for larger image.

Afraid of the mullah-madrasa-mujahid combine, predictably, Pakistan started denying any role in the killing of Osama Bin Laden. Truly Pakistan ‘doth protest too much, methinks’. Secret deal or not, in the past or post-facto, a deal around killing Osama could have been easily hammered out between Pakistan and USA.

It suited both the leaderships.

It is election time in USA

Pakistan was not alone in using Osama. Osama alive was source of US funds for Pakistan. Osama dead is an election ticket and a feel-good factor for the a USA being battered by the Great Recession. As Rajiv Dogra points out, on the opposite side of the world,

The timing suited Obama well. It had long been speculated that Osama would be killed around the time Obama’s re-election campaign kicked off.

Predictably, the US made a song-and-dance about the annual aid of US$3 billion that they dole out to Pakistan. Compared to the US$3 trillion that the US Department of Defence is unable to account for, this talk of US$3 billion makes for poor form.

Pakistan's soldiers patrolling the tribal area of Ditta Kheil in North Waziristan for militants and al-Qaida activists in March.| Photograph by Mohammad Iqbal/Associated Press | Picture courtesy nytimes.com /Click for original image.

Pakistan's soldiers patrolling the tribal area of Ditta Kheil in North Waziristan for militants and al-Qaida activists in March.| Photograph by Mohammad Iqbal/Associated Press | Picture courtesy nytimes.com /Click for original image.

On a lighter – and logical side

Famous for the song केम छे ‘kem che, kem che’ from the film जिस देश में गंगा रहता है Jis Desh Mein Ganga Rahta Hain, a Bollywood songwriter confidently predicted, soon after 9/11, that Bin Laden would be found near the White House or Islamabad!

Coming to India

Memories dimmed, history forgotten, India draws wrong conclusions from these Western adventures in our neighbourhood.

After WWII, as British, French and Dutch colonialists were being thrown out of Asia, in country after country, the West was in real danger of losing markets and raw material sources.

To make war palatable, Desert Bloc invented religion. (Image  source - loonpond.com; artist attribution not available at image  source)

To make war palatable, Desert Bloc invented religion. (Image source - http://loonpond.blogspot.com; artist attribution not available at image source).

A new power, fueled by a growing migrant population, USA, took the place of tired, old powers – Britain, France and the Dutch. Instead of the openly exploitative system of European powers directly running colonial governments in these Asian countries, the US installed an opaque system – which is equally exploitative. To impose its writ on the newly independent Asian countries, the US simply destroyed their  economies by war. The USA, then instituted the innovative USCAP Program and ‘helped’ these countries. These countries (Taiwan, Singapore, Japan, South Korea, Indonesia, Malaysia, et al) were now ruled by overtly independent regimes – but covertly, client states of the USA.

US multinationals and home-grown oligarchs (keiretsus, chaebols, etc.) took over the economy – and sidelined British, French and Dutch companies. To impose this economic model, US armies, using nearly 1 million troops, killed 50 lakh Asians. The takeover of European colonial possessions by the USA was handled over 3 regimes of Eisenhower-Kennedy-Johnson seamlessly.

Between a rampant USA, behind biggest terror spots of the world, and a nuclear-armed, imploding Pakistan, India’s choices are difficult – and reactive policies inadequate.

Once more, Osama’s death and Obama’s antics bring out India’s policy inadequacy in sharp relief.

Indian Govt on hunt for 31 ‘wanted’

February 27, 2011 Leave a comment
Cartoon by Kirtish Bhatt; courtesy - http://bamulahija.wordpress.com

Cartoon by Kirtish Bhatt; courtesy - http://bamulahija.wordpress.com

Centre has shared an updated dossier of 31 most wanted terrorists — including 19 of IM and 12 of the other Lashkar-SIMI front, Jama-i-tul Ansarul Muslimeen (JIAM) — with states, asking them to launch a manhunt for them. Security agencies believe that 10 terrorists may be hiding somewhere in the country.

With a majority of them suspected to be in West Asian countries like the UAE and Qatar on Pakistani passports, India has sought help from these nations in the wake of the Varanasi blast.

“A list, comprising 17 top IM terrorists, including Bhatkal brothers — Riyaz and Iqbal — the outfit’s bombmaker Yasin Bhatkal, financer Mohsin Chaudhary and technical expert Abdus Subhan Usman Qureshi alias Tauqeer, has also been with Pakistan for over nine months,” said a senior home ministry official. New Delhi had shared these details with Islamabad during foreign secretary-level talks in February. (Post-Varanasi, govt on hunt for 31 ‘wanted’ – The Times of India).

Small numbers …big problem

31 terrorists is India’s problem. The answer to these 31 operatives is dedicated teams for each terrorist.  Teams drawn from the 10 affected states, with 2 specialists from each state, dedicated to the  task of booking these 31 terrorists. 620 in all. 30 support staff. 6 in information technology; 12 in accounts & admin another twelve in documentation and secretarial section. Another 50 experts in language, cipher, psychology, intelligence, politics and culture can support this group. 700 people in all. To hunt down these 31.

Replacing these 31 operatives will be tough for any organization.

India must 'loose' 2000 DAT Teams (Dedicated Anti-Terrorist Teams) on the 2000 terrorists and 42 terrorist training camps. Table Source - 2ndlook.

India must 'loose' 2000 DAT Teams (Dedicated Anti-Terrorist Teams) on the 2000 terrorists and 42 terrorist training camps. Table Source - 2ndlook.

 

Let’s do the numbers

Indian police has a superb network of ‘humint.’ But, they need more than that – for neutralizing terror.

There are finally less than 1000 SIMI + HuJI activists who could be future terrorists. There are a similar 1000 Kashmiri terrorists. What India needs to do, is to set up a national database on these 2000 suspects – allot (say) teams of 5 policemen to these 1000 suspects.

Monitoring the activities of the 2000 suspects cannot be a national pastime. With neural networks and similar ‘intelligent’ systems, India police should be able to improve their ‘intelligence.’

2ndlook plan for terrorism

2ndlook has been working on a plan to tackle terrorism for 30 months now – resting on an intel-based theme. Not on more – computers, policemen, organizations.

The first output in this plan was the answer to counterfeit currency problem. 2ndlook analyzed this problem (in September 2008) down to a handful of Western companies, their Governments and proprietors who supply Pakistan with the paraphernalia to make fake currency notes. India needs to tackle these 12 companies and about 4 Governments.

The second stage in this plan was 50 days before 26/11 Mumbai attackson October 3rd 2008. Specialist teams to tackle identified, confirmed, proven terrorist candidates – DAT Teams (Dedicated Anti-Terrorist Teams). Instead of Western-style Draconian laws, which depend on mass jails, kills, hanging, State Terrorism, torture, India must depend on a targetted alternative.

Cartoon by Kirtish Bhatt; courtesy - http://bamulahija.wordpress.com

Cartoon by Kirtish Bhatt; courtesy - http://bamulahija.wordpress.com

For numbers will set you free

After 26/11, came a bigger 2ndlook anti-terrorism plan. Without demonizing Pakistan, or Pakistanis. Further development of better data came in December 2009, when specific numbers were revealed by Army Chief Deepak Kapoor. 42 terrorist camps is what the Indian intelligence agencies had estimated. Instead of putting a full army on alert, is it not possible to lob grenades into these 42 army camps every month for six months. With such sustained attacks comings in, how long will this structure-of-terrorism hold up.

Indian Government has taken action on some of these proposed points. The FCN issue was taken up with the necessary Euro-zone countries. India also decided to make its own security paper, instead of depending on unreliable-and-unethical European companies.

Season for oligarchies – Corporates may control vegetable trade

November 26, 2010 33 comments
Very soon, this is all we will get to eat. Some overpaid corporate executive will decide what we eat at what price! (Cartoonist- Andy Singer; cartoon courtesy-www.mindfully.org.). Click for larger image.

Very soon, this is all we will get to eat. Some overpaid corporate executive will decide what we eat, at what price! (Cartoonist- Andy Singer; cartoon courtesy-www.mindfully.org.). Click for larger image.

death for ordinary rythu bazars and vegetable markets, (as) the entire trade of vegetables, fruits and meat will come under the control of corporates like Metro, Heritage, Reliance or Al Kabeer once the massive terminal market complexes (TMCs) being proposed come into existence in the state.

The corporate setting up the TMCs will (INVEST) Rs 150 crore towards this business, the state government will have a 26 per cent stake (for) 50 acres to 200 acres of land. The private enterprise (PE) will own the remaining portion of the business.

The state government is constructing these massive modern whosesale markets in Hyderabad, Guntur, Vizag and Tirupati, ostensibly to help the farmers. The farmers will directly sell the produce to the TMC, thereby cutting out middlemen. Another advantage is a cleaner, modern bazar with facilities like warehousing, cold storage, ripening chambers, cleaning, grading and processing along with extension of advisory service to farmers.

However, prices will be fixed by the corporate. (with) retail prices of vegetables likely to go up for the consumer. The question is would it benefit the farmers or the company which will gain control over the entire vegetable business of the state.

Corporations will decide which pesticide, what seeds, what prices, what items we eat. Who do you think will benefit? Not me, I know! (Cartoonist - Joe Mohr; cartoon courtesy - http://ecopolitology.org.). Click for larger image.

Corporations will decide which pesticide, what seeds, what prices, what items we eat. Who do you think will benefit? Not me, I know! (Cartoonist - Joe Mohr; cartoon courtesy - http://ecopolitology.org.). Click for larger image.

The TMC will control the production and collection of vegetables from the farmers over certain radius, “While it is not mandatory for the farmer to sell his produce to the TMC, the private operator will offer him a higher price as well as induce them with loans for procurement for seeds. This in the end will make the farmer a captive seller to the TMC and for the retail consumer, the prices of vegetables, fruits and meat will become costlier,” said the sources. (read more via Corporates may control vegetable trade; parts excised for brevity).

Ignorant bureaucrats

Kasargod in Kerala is in the grip of a strange malady. Deformed children.

The Plantation Corporation of Kerala (PCK) has been cultivating cashew in 4500 hectares spread across this district. Since the early 1980s the PCK has been aerially spraying an organochlorine pesticide called endosulfan that has been banned in many countries including Singapore, Denmark, Germany, Holland and Sweden. Over the last several months, various reports in the media as well as studies done by institutions like the Centre for Science and Environment (CSE), New Delhi have indicated a strong link between the aerial spraying of endosulfan and the number of deaths and illnesses in the area. (read more via The Hindu : Cashews for human life?).

Cartoonist - Clay Bennet; cartoon courtesy - www.ritholtz.com). Click for larger image.

Corporate executives will soon dictate to us. They will buy Government's silence. (Cartoonist - Clay Bennet; cartoon courtesy - http://www.ritholtz.com). Click for larger image.

We have seen stories on how swine flu started in La Gloria, a little town in Mexico, at the one of Mexico’s biggest hog factories, owned by the world’s largest pig processor, Smithfield Foods. The world diabetes epidemic by industrial and junk food is become an old story.

And now this

AP Government wants to handover vegetable trade to highest bidder. Some 50-150 acres of land is proposed to be given these companies. These corporations will be able to raise all that money for investment just by p-ledging the land that the Government is handing over to them.

These private monopolies will have monopoly over agricultural output in their designated areas. Producers will given the choice of selling at any mandi to that monopoly buyer. All the ryuthu bazaars will close. The nearly 10,000 vegetable vendors who serve Hyderabad’s 10 lakh (1 million) households can buy from the one monopoly buyer. Another 10,000 eating houses will have the choice of one vendor.

India has indeed becoming a ‘free’ country.

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